CARY, N.C. (Nov. 10, 2020) – The CEO Roundtable on Cancer has recognized the healthcare business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, operating as EMD Serono in the US and Canada, with the 2020 Dr. Charles A. Sanders Award for collaborative scientific research in cancer.

The annual award recognizes an individual or company that personifies the characteristics of leadership, innovation, and collaboration in cancer research.

“It is an honor for Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany to be named this year’s recipient of the Charles A. Sanders Life Sciences Award,” said Dr. Belén Garijo, Vice Chair of the Executive Board and Deputy CEO of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, CEO Healthcare. “The award is a symbol of our enduring commitment to accelerate the discovery and development of improved treatments for all patients with cancer.”

“Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, really exemplifies the level and degree of involvement and collaboration that benefits us all,” said Bob Bradway, Chairman of the CEO Roundtable on Cancer and Chairman of Amgen.

Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, has been a part of the CEO Roundtable on Cancer since 2012 and has earned CEO Cancer Gold Standard accreditation since 2011. The accreditation evaluates health benefits and workplace culture to ensure that companies take extensive, concrete action in five key areas of health and well-being to address cancer in the workplace.

In 2017, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, partnered with Project Data Sphere to establish the Global Oncology Big Data Alliance (GOBDA). The purpose of the alliance is to fuel important collaborations in oncology, data science, and regulatory policy. The aim of the alliance is to create new chances to accelerate treatments to oncology patients who need them.

Members of the Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, team are engaged closely in this work, which is focused on Rare Tumor Registries, Immune Related Adverse Events, and the data-sharing platform operated by Project Data Sphere.

Project Data Sphere is an independent initiative of the CEO Roundtable on Cancer, tasked to work with experts in industry, academia, and government to achieve mutual goals of accelerating cancer drug discovery.

The Sanders Award was established in 2013 in honor of Dr. Charles A. Sanders, former Chairman of Glaxo, and Chairman of the Foundation of the National Institutes of Health.

Dr. Sanders himself has been the force behind many innovations that prolong and improve life. He also helped shape health education and medical research through his work as chief executive of Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard University.

Dr. Sanders represents the kind of leadership, innovation, collaboration and patient-centered commitment that the CEO Roundtable on Cancer advocates and seeks to replicate.

About Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany

Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, a leading science and technology company, operates across healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 57,000 employees work to make a positive difference to millions of people’s lives every day by creating more joyful and sustainable ways to live. From advancing gene editing technologies and discovering unique ways to treat the most challenging diseases to enabling the intelligence of devices – the company is everywhere. In 2019, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, generated sales of € 16.2 billion in 66 countries.

The company holds the global rights to the name and trademark “Merck” internationally. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the business sectors of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany operate as EMD Serono in healthcare, MilliporeSigma in life science, and EMD Performance Materials. Since its founding in 1668, scientific exploration and responsible entrepreneurship have been key to the company’s technological and scientific advances. To this day, the founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed company.

About The CEO Roundtable on Cancer

The CEO Roundtable on Cancer was founded in 2001, when former President George H.W. Bush challenged a group of executives to “do something bold and venturesome about cancer within your own corporate families.”

For more information on the CEO Roundtable on Cancer please visit


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